The thing about marriage, is that it takes alot of work to get the formula right.
There is one thing for sure, my single life would have been much easier. Having said that, I am not saying marriage life isnt good either but the bare fact is that, at least being single, I only have to contend with my own "bad" habits rather than his...which fortunately are few.
Just the other day, while having dinner with 2 other couples of my husband's friends, the topic on "Husband's nasty habits" came up. We chanced upon the topic when one of the wife "exposed" and lamented about the chewing tobacco "secret" of her husband (my husband friends). We were shocked at this nasty habit. He goodnaturedly demonstrated the tobacco sac which he deftly inserted up above his gum. So his wife let on that they had "disagreed strongly" about this unhealthy habit as she couldnt stand the smell, plus it would result in a black hole in the gum eventually. The conversation ended up like a round table sharing and the poor husbands sat there grinning like silly ducks.
When it reached me, I strangely couldnt think of anything at the top of my head. That doesnt mean my husband is perfect. I didnt know if I have gotten use to his nasty habits, or it just wasnt that significant enough to be at the top of my head.
My husband volunteered his own "nasty habit" when he saw me paused. I hated him shaking his legs. It annoyed me alot when I see him doing it before me. I didnt know why his mum allowed him to persist even though she thought it was a bad habit too. So now, I have to slap his thigh every time. He does it less now, after I pointed out all the "china man" in HK doing it. Apparently he didnt realise how "awful" it looked.
Today, when I was taking the clothes out from the washer. His other nasty habit came floating back when I saw all the bits and pieces of tissue all over my fresh laundry and washer inerior. Annoyed is an understatement. I hated it when he never bother to take the tissue pack out of his pants or shorts before throwing the soiled clothes into the laundry basket.
Instead of a simple 5 mins process of hanging clothes, it ended up as 10mins picking all the tissue out from my front loaded drum, 15 mins of flinging all the tissue bits off from every piece of the clothes before hanging, another 10mins of taking the vaccum cleaner out to remove all the pieces of white mess all over the floor from kitchen to the living room and balcony. So my husband's laziness to check for the tissue pack, has inevitably cost me extra 30mins of unnecessary housework.
In the past when I complained, he doesnt understand what the fuss was. We talked about it, we fought about it, we had cold war about it. If I were to do all the housework, I expected my partner to contribute in a small way, which is to check his pockets. I didnt think that is a tall order.
So today as i was vaccuming the floor "grudgingly", I knew that if I am living alone, things like this would never happen. I wont be wasting time doing things such as picking up the dirt.
It is easy to start a fight for the hassle but I choose not to. For the fact that the frequency of washing tissue has lessen, and the fact that he made an effort was a good enough compromise.
I guess that is what marriage is about when they say "Give and Take". Don't nag continously. Don't harp on the some points and wave it like some trumph card. Fight the fight worth fighting. Don't ignore any small steps or improvements from your partner even if the final results isnt perfect or what you hoped for. That are probably the secret ingredients of all lasting marriages. Don't you agree?
Rather than getting all upset after so many years. I am toying with a new alternative. Perhaps I should buy him a hankerchief instead.... At least if he forgot about it, it wont inconvenience me as much...